Saturday, November 19, 2011

Food Bloggers Dish On How to "Spin" Your Favorite Thanksgiving Dishes

When it comes to Thanksgiving food bloggers or “foodies” are anything but traditional. Their favorite philosophy is “Think Outside the Box”. Putting down the Thanksgiving menu is as exciting for them as cooking and sharing the meal with family and friends. Foodies always like to place a creative pin to traditional dishes. The result are unique scrumptious and mouth-watering food that could give any professional chef a run for their money.

Recently, food bloggers from "The Brown Culinary Experience" offered their takes on their favorite Thanksgiving dishes.

1. Citrus Mojo & Sage Infused Cornish Hen With Candied Pecan Glaze. Thanksgiving, Latin Style! by Bren Herrera, Flanboyant Eats



If you are cooking for a small crowd or simply want to try a different "bird" for Thanksgiving this recipe will turn you into a kitchen hero. The citrus mojo marinate and the caramelized pecan glaze with a touch of cranberry juice elevates this dish to a whole new level.  

2. Orange Whipped Sweet Potatoes with Hazelnuts by Sanura Weathers from My Life Runs On Food


Tired of the same old sweet potatoes casserole? Sanura Weathers puts a healthy spin on this dish. This citrus-flavored whipped sweet potato dish is more about flavor than adding sugar.

3. Apple and Roasted Beet Salad by Kari Heron from Chef and Steward


Roasting beets not only enhance their flavor but concentrates their natural sweetness. Once roasted the skin peels easily. Beets come in  vibrant red or golden yellow. Both are delicious raw or cooked. The great thing about this recipe is that it can be made ahead of time.


Winter root vegetables roasted with warming spices makes an excellent side dish for the holidays. Sea salt, allspice, cinammon and a hint of crushed red pepper flakes makes this dish irresistible!

5. Cinnamon Vanilla Baked Plantains by Madelyn Rodiguez from Karmafree Cooking


Plantains are a rich comlex starch. Believe it or not, plantains are considered one of the healthiest food in the world. Unlike its banana cousin, plantains has more dietary fibers and has less water and sugar. Plantains are a staple food in many Caribbean and Hispanic cultures. They are soft, sweet, gooey and very rich in flavor.



Last year, for Thanksgiving dinner, I decided I wanted to serve rice as one of my side dishes. After I read several recipes I couldn't find one that really caught my eye so I decided to make  my own. I was serving quail instead of turkey so I knew I had to find a flavor combination that would compliment the quail. Onion rice is something I do well so I decided to use the recipe as a base and put a fall twist on it. Instead of regular rice I used Rice Select Royal Blend Wild Rice Mix. It's basically a mix of whole grain, texmati brown & red rice with barley & rye.

I added golden raisins, roasted chopped hazelnuts, and braised fennel that has been cooked in 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil and 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter and a gulp of apple cider. Don't worry about the amount just eyeball it.

Basically, all you need to do is to incorporate the braised fennel, golden raisins, and chopped roasted hazelnuts to one cup of rice. Add two cups of beef stock, salt and pepper to taste and cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer until all the liquid is absorbed and rice is tender.

   
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